Maison Alcée is a new approach of high-end watchmaking, offering the possibility of to assemble with his hands. You will be able to make a clock, a timepiece, from your home, following detailed steps, without time constraints, alone, with family or friends. This experience aims at discovering in more details the functioning of a clock, and more broadly some watchmaking concepts, and to put yourself in the place of a watchmaker for a moment.
An initiation to watchmaking with Maison Alcée, the high-end do-it-yourself
Discover the history of Alcée and its founder: Alcée Montfort
Maison Alcée is the adventure of Alcée Montfort, a young woman with a passion for manual creations.
Coming from a family of engineers, she chose to study fundamental physics, before realizing that a more manual environment would suit her better.
In 2013, she discovered the craftsmanship of excellence during an internship at the Hermès House. He worked with the artisans in their silk and leather goods workshops. His role was to accompany the craftsmen in order to help them to solve problems of flatness of colors or marking of leather.
In 2015, she joined the Cartier House. She joined the eyewear department, where she learned everything there is to know about the supply chain. She was then hired in the workshop of restoration of old watches of the Richemont Group and then by LVMH in 2017, as head of the movement assembly workshop for the brand Day Heuer.
It is with all her experience acquired within great watchmaking houses, that she decided, in 2019, to implement her personal project, which was close to her heart, consisting in to offer enthusiasts, initiated or not, the possibility to slip into the skin of a watchmaker to assemble his own timepiece.
In order to implement this project, which is very important to her, Alcée has surrounded herself with competent people: watchmaking teachers from the Lycée de Morteau, including Thierry Ducret. The company is run by a team of experts, including the "Meilleur Ouvrier de France" (watchmaking category), designers for the product design and engineers for the component design.
The timepieces of Maison Alcée
Each timepiece is delivered in kit form. Several variations exist, with different finishes:
Perseus Mild with details in pink
Perseus Azure, the emblematic model of the House, with blue elements, inspired by the depth of the Mediterranean Sea
Perseus Night with yellow details characteristic of the House, and a black body giving it a very modern style
Each one is assembled and then disassembled before being sent to the customer, to ensure the quality and precision of the timepiece. No detail is left to chance. Each of the components is visible through the architecture of the movement, which is quite open. The models are limited to 500 copies each.
A movement manufactured and developed at 90% in France
Watchmaking is an art, but also a technical challenge. The movement of the timepieces is manufactured and developed by and for Maison Alcée. It should be noted that 90% of the production is carried out in the Jura region.
By choosing components produced in the Franco-Swiss Jura region, Maison Alcée wishes to further perpetuate the Franco-Swiss watchmaking heritage and know-how.
The components/materials have been studied and designed to be robust, and handled by novice watchmakers. On this movement, only the regulating organ is pre-assembled. This caliber is hand-wound, with a power reserve of 14 days.
An experience that begins when you open the box: attention to detail
The Maison Alcée set includes everything you need to assemble your timepiece in the best conditions, with watchmaker's equipment ranging from tools , watchmaker's bench (optional), to the components.
Contents of the Maison Alcée box: the components
This mechanism is made up of 233 components, of which 17 if you choose to add the complication of the hour ringing, all divinely well installed in its case and its foams.
Contents of the Maison Alcée box: the booklet
An important element of the set is the booklet, which contains a large number of stories, d'anecdotes as well as instructions to guide you in the assembly of your timepiece. This is not a simple manual, but rather a small book of about 150 pages.
If this booklet is not enough support for the assembly of your timepiece, detailed videos are also available for the more detailed assembly parts.
Contents of the Maison Alcée box: the tools
To assemble your timepiece, a set of tools (17) is provided. It includes 4 tournevis watchmakers, a brucelle in brass, a magnifying glass watchmaker, a oil spade a oiler with its oil, some fingertips to work, a fabric microfibre as well as a membrane box to suspend the regulator and protect the fragile components against shocks. Tools that you can keep and reuse to work on other watches.
Receive, at home, a real watchmaker's bench to assemble your Maison Alcée clock
The optional workbench, available in massif beech or oak. This is the perfect tool to assemble your timepiece in comfort. There are two armrests for more precise handling of the various components, small compartments for storing your tools, and a channel for holding stubborn components.
The opinion of the editors
We had the chance to attend a Maison Alcée event in partnership with the Centre Porsche Reims, where we could discover in details this house, and take in hands some components during a small initiation workshop.
The first words that immediately came to mind were: quality and passion. Indeed, as soon as we sat down in front of the workbench, opened the booklet, the box, we felt the sense of detail implemented in this experience. A few minutes will have been enough to transpose us into the skin of a budding watchmaker.
No need to worry about mounting the timepiece, the steps are very well explained. The components are robust, one feels that they have been studied to be handled by novice watchmakers. The video tutorials are an interesting point to underline in case of difficulty of assembly, and a whatsapp group is available if you have questions.
If you wish to take time, to realize an exciting activity, to discover the time, Maison Alcée is the ideal proposal. We had a real crush on the Perseus Azur model.
You can find more information on the Maison alcée website.
Passionate about timepieces, and everything that revolves around them for many years, my ambition is to share my watchmaking adventure, and help you to enlighten yourself on this world that seems so inaccessible, and yet, is not. Every watchmaking story is initiated by encounters, and continues with an endless curiosity, a real addiction to the very embodiment of time.
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